Sunday, November 25, 2007

Our delicious dinner....

I'm blessed to have a husband that really likes to cook in general and I love this about him. And while I enjoy his cooking throughout the year, something happens at thanksgiving where he pulls out this hat of master gourmet chef extraordinaire.....this is the second thanksgiving that zach has taken over and planned, and when i say "taken over" i mean it....the recipes were top secret even to me and i had to snoop really hard to find them in the secret chef folder this year!! there is a system to this event and there is no messing with it- a group of us tackle the shopping for this meal, with the chef in charge handing out alphabetized grocery lists to each of us and sending us on our way to find items, some of which were really difficult just to pronounce! preparation for the meal takes place on the day before thanksgiving and most of the morning of.....each of us at chopping stations preparing parts of the meal and getting everything organized and ready. it is a labor of love, and a fun one at that!

the menu this year was a huge hit, once again, and we all gladly nominate zach to be in charge of whatever meal he pleases. now, for the unveiling of the menu....
Spiced Pomegranate Apple Cider
Velvety Butternut/Acorn Squash Soup
Potato/Sour Cream Biscuits
Spinach Artichoke Dip with Bacon with Pecorino-Black Pepper Breadsticks (the only culinary disaster of the day....I was in charge of this one and added baking soda to the dough instead of baking powder, causing me to take one bite, spit it in the trash, and promptly dump the whole tray in with it....oh well!)

Classic Herb Roasted Turkey with Gravy
Buttermilk Mashed Potatoes with herb infused olive oil (i think these won the #1 delicious!)
Green Beans with Toasted Hazelnut Lemon Butter
Sweet Potato Casserole - topped with a yummy streusel and marshmallows, of course
Cranberry/Apricot Sauce
Herb Stuffing

Pear Crisp with Oat Streusel Topping
The classic Pumpkin Pie with home-made cinnamon/vanilla whip cream (i'll take the credit for this one!)

and for our after dinner drink, which ended up being a next day drink since we were all so stuffed we couldn't imagine putting one more thing in our mouth....
Banana foster punch- this is basically a drink inspired by the classic dessert of rum drenched carmelized bananas topped with ice cream, only it was all blended up into a beautifully rich dessert drink....yum, yum, yum!!!
now, aren't you impressed???
I sure am.

the cute cousins relaxing together after the big meal


I love thanksgiving. I love the food, and the long weekend, and of course the pumpkin treats. But most of all i love the simplicity of the holiday and the idea that the whole holiday is about being together. my parents and sister came into town for the week, so all of us were together and had lots of time to enjoy each other, the kids, and the relaxed pace of the calm before the christmas storm hits. my sister and i decided it would be fun to plan a Thanksgiving fun run/walk for any of our friends that were still in town. we met at greenlake and walked/ran the 3 mile loop together Thanksgiving morning. it was such a fun way to start the day.

it happened to be a gorgeous, sunny, cold week in seattle and being out in the sunshine with friends and family and lots of other people just enjoying each other reminded me of all i have to be thankful for. thanks to all our friends who came out to our 1st Annual Fun Run....we will definitely have to do it again next year!

Thursday, November 01, 2007

treat filled day....

I literally think today was like a dream come true for Zara....I mean, come on.....getting to dress up like a fairy princess and go out of our house....carrying around a bucket and knocking on doors and just being given candy after candy, just for asking!?....her mom not caring how much candy she ate because what the's just once a year, right??
She LOVED it.....
she loved dressing up, and twirling around, and saying trick or treat, and being with her friends, and waving her fairy wand and just the whole thing. she really loved it.
and i loved watching her- the enjoyment she felt made me so happy as well. and being with our friends and family and their kids and just taking part in all of it together ....ahhh....what fun memories.....